Brigham Young student takes the first Sparky Awards Peoples’ Choice Prize

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April 14, 2010

Jennifer McLennan
(202) 296-2296 ext. 121
jennifer [at] arl [dot] org

Washington, DC – Aaron Ludwig, a sophomore animation student at Brigham Young University, has won the first-ever Sparky Awards Peoples’ Choice prize for his short film, “Clueless Discovery.” The video was voted the best by students and others everywhere in an open online vote held earlier this Spring.

Organized by SPARC (the Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition) and adopted by campuses everywhere, the Sparky Awards contest calls on entrants to creatively illustrate in a short video the value of openly sharing ideas. “Clueless Discovery” is a clear presentation of how failing to share information and “reinventing the wheel” not only hampers progress, but can be harmful. The clip is online at

Clueless Discovery from Aaron Ludwig on Vimeo.

“I believe strongly in Open Access and sharing information,” said Ludwig. “The more we share with those around us, the more we ourselves will learn and the better our society will become. I found it fitting that, when I ran into problems or had questions as I created my video (in Adobe Flash, which I hadn’t used before), friends of mine were there to help, sharing what they knew to help me overcome the obstacles I faced. They shared and I learned.”

Ludwig was one entrant in a local version of the contest hosted by Brigham Young University.

“The Harold B. Lee library is thrilled to congratulate Aaron Ludwig on winning this award,” said Julene Butler, library director at Brigham Young University. “We’re so pleased to see the hard work of BYU students recognized this way. And, it’s another pay off from our modest investment in the Sparky Awards. The greatest benefits have been student awareness of copyright and Creative Commons, their increased familiarity with library services, and seeing students stop to think about sharing ideas and how it changes and enriches our world. Congratulations, Aaron!”

The 2009 Sparky Awards were also syndicated by libraries at the University of Florida, University of Houston, University of Pennsylvania, Penn State (Digital Commons), Southern Illinois University Carbondale, University of Tennessee at Knoxville, University of Victoria, and the University of Western Ontario.

The People’s Choice Award winner receives a $500 cash prize plus a personalized award certificate. The Grand Prize winner, Runner Up, and recipient of a 2009 Honorable Mention were announced in February. Visit the Sparky Awards Web site for details.

The 2009 Sparky Awards were organized by SPARC and co-sponsored by: the Association of College and Research Libraries, the Association of Research Libraries, Campus MovieFest, the Center for Social Media, the New Media Consortium (NMC), the Open Video Alliance, Penn Libraries, Students for Free Culture, the Student PIRGs, and SPARC (the Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition).

Details of the 2010 Sparky Awards are expected this Spring.

For more information, visit the Sparky Awards Web site at

THE SPARKY AWARDS are organized and sponsored by SPARC (Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition), an alliance of academic libraries and research institutions working to build on the opportunities created by the networked digital environment to advance the conduct of scholarship. Membership in SPARC is open to libraries of all sizes.